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TEXTPRO

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TEXTPRO


Published 1985


Cosmi TEXTPRO Word Processor. 1985.

As this column continues looking at lesser known moments of colossal retrocomputing idiocy, surely this is an abnormal example? OK, cue time warp and try again.

You finally type the last paragraph...and accidentally hit the ENTER key without typing in a filename at the "save" prompt. Maybe it's fatigue or just the computer's infamous keybounce doing double duty after you ENTERed the save command in the first place. In any event, the computer crashes and the only fix is turning the power off, losing your work.

(Company's response: Why would somebody press ENTER without entering a filename when prompted to do so? It's your fault, stupid.)

The second above example belongs to TextPro, a word processor whose long existence I never understood. Above all else, it was a line-oriented program. For those not familiar with this particular form of writing hell, it's something novice BASIC programmers wrote in the early days of personal computers that offered barely more usefulness than a typewriter. You type in a line or sentence at a time and press ENTER. Each line is assigned a number. If you want to edit anything, you have to go to a special mode where you provide the line number and retype the text. Inserting, deleting and moving text is pure hell, if it can be done at all. This is just the beginning of the misery, but for the sake of space I'll simply reiterate the commercial value of such programs was low or nonexistent. But TextPro lasted for years despite a premium price tag matching full-featured word processors. One reason was it offered a printer buffer so you could keep writing, but it suffered from a terrible, terrible bug. If anything interrupted the printing process, the file was destroyed because how the buffer was programmed.

(From Retrogaming Times Monthly 58 , Computer Idiocy Part 3: Simply Destructive)


Identifier apple_2_textpro
Emulator apple2e
Emulator_ext dsk
Mediatype software
Scanner Internet Archive Python library 0.5.0
Publicdate 2014-02-01 04:15:12
Addeddate 2014-02-01 04:15:12
Creator Cosmi, Inc.
Date 1985
Year 1985

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